File it under “Ironic.” The Scooter Store faces EEOC charges that it failed to accommodate an employee who had a hard time getting around because of an injured knee. The New Braunfels-based chain sells motorized scooters and power chairs for people with limited mobility.
There’s danger in every aspect of firing, from WARN Act layoffs and exit interviews to constructive discharge and more.
Learn how to fire an employee and sidestep wrongful termination lawsuits, with battle-tested firing procedures, and employment termination letters. At last, you can fire at will!
It’s true that at-will employees can be fired for any reason or no reason at all, as long as that reason isn’t discriminatory. Many employers therefore conclude that they don’t have to tell an employee why he’s being let go. But some even conclude they don’t have to document the reason, either. That can be a big mistake.
Under what’s called the Cat’s Paw Theory, employers can’t defend themselves against employment discrimination claims by saying they didn’t know a supervisor was biased. The theory was first introduced in Shager v. Upjohn, a 1990 7th Circuit Court of Appeals decision.
Poor performers facing disciplinary action may despair when they realize they can’t improve fast enough to avoid termination. Often, that’s when they request a transfer to another open position within the organization. But before you agree to a transfer, be sure to demand the employee’s request in writing and outline exactly why the transfer is being arranged.
Much as you would like to, you can’t control every statement that comes out of supervisors’ mouths. Someday, someone somewhere within your organization will utter an ethnic comment or slur. That doesn’t have to become the basis for a successful lawsuit—as long as you have a track record of treating all employees fairly.